Dozens of students displaced after Imagine Schools closes its doors


EL CENTRO, Calif. - Editor's Note: News 11 first reported that over 800 students had been displaced. We were informed by officials from the El Centro Elementary School District Friday afternoon that the number is significantly lower. According to an email by school district officials, at least 85 percent of Imagine Schools students had enrolled at local schools. The district expects that number to increase with the announcement of Imagine Schools closing their doors. Officials also said that they did not have a problem allocating these students at other local schools. 

Dozens of students from Imagine Schools are now displaced after the school withdrew its appeal to continue as a charter at the California Board of Education on Thursday.

After being denied a charter renewal by both the El Centro Elementary Unified School District and The Imperial County Office of Education, Imagine Schools' last hope was to appeal to the state. But on September 7, the school informed parents during a meeting about their decision to close the campus. 

KYMA spoke to Ronda Cagle, Imagine Schools' Chief Communication and Development Officer over the phone who said, "It became clear that our appeal would not have the support or opportunity necessary in the hearing to the revocation of the charter."

Imagine Schools will cease all operations in the Imperial Valley. "Our staff will be working to comply with all state statutes regarding the closure of the campus. And Imagine Schools of Imperial Valley will no longer exist," said Cagle.

This means that over 800 students will be displaced, but Imagine Schools will work with parents to help students register in new schools. 

Cagle said, "We're doing everything in our power to ensure a smooth transition for our students so their educational journey can continue." 

Whether school districts in Imperial County can implement that many students into their classrooms is still left unanswered.

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